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US Chamber provides COVID-19 update

By submitted, 08/11/20 9:07 AM

The U.S. Chamber put out a summary of President Trump’s Executive Orders that were signed over the weekend. We have no idea if any of this will go into effect. We expect it to be at least a week or two before it would be implemented.

Executive Order on Unemployment Insurance

·       Sets-aside up to $44 billion from FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund to provide supplemental unemployment benefits to the unemployed.

·       The total value of the supplemental benefits is $400 per week per person through December 6, 2020 or until funds are exhausted.

·       FEMA funds can only cover 75% of the cost ($300 per person per week). State’s must cover the remaining 25% ($100 per person per week).

·       Governors’ must request the assistance.

·       Requests that states use any of their remaining funds provided under the CARES Act to fund the state portion.

Executive Order on Payroll Tax Deferral

·        Directs the Treasury Secretary to defer the withholding, deposit, and payment of the 6.2% payroll tax imposed on individuals for individuals whose bi-weekly wages are less than $4,000 pre-tax (approximately $104,000 a year).

·        The deferral is for taxes due September 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

·        Amounts deferred are deferred without penalty or interest.

·        Directs the Treasury to “explore avenues,” including legislation, to have the deferred payments forgiven.

Executive Order on Evictions

·        Directs that the HHS Secretary and the Director of CDC “shall consider whether any measures temporarily halting residential evictions of any tenants for failure to pay rent are reasonably necessary to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 from one State or possession into any other State or possession.”

·        Directs the Treasury Secretary and HUD Secretary to identify available Federal funds to provide temporary financial assistance to renters and homeowners.

·        Directs the HUD Secretary to “take action, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, to promote the ability of renters and homeowners to avoid eviction or foreclosure…”

·        Directs that the Director of Federal Housing Finance Agency “shall review all existing authorities and resources that may be used to prevent evictions and foreclosures for renters and homeowners resulting from hardships caused by COVID-19.”

Executive Order on Student Loans

·        Directs the Secretary of Education to take action to modify existing hardship deferment requirements and “provide such deferments to borrowers as necessary to continue the temporary cessation of payments and the waiver of all interest on student loans held by the Department of Education until December 31, 2020.”

State News

As of August 9, the state has a total of 7.387 active COVID-19 cases and 514 hospitalizations. Gov. Hutchinson’s August 7 COVID-19 update here.   

The next “RechARge Arkansas” webinar, “Running Virtual Meetings – Avoiding Zoom Pitfalls,” presented by Adam Brooks, Ph. D., will be held tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 11 at 2:30 p.m.

Slow internet, distracting background noises, and poorly planned meetings can all contribute to ineffective meeting in the virtual environment.

By the end of this webinar you’ll be able to:

·    Determine the specific purpose and outcome for your next meeting.

·    Apply tips and techniques to ensure you are driving engagement and staying connected in your virtual space.

·    Learn tips on framing your videos, lighting, and visual aids.

·    Demonstrate strategies for how to build relationships and community through impactful communication.

To register for tomorrow’s 2:30 p.m. session, click here.

Another “RechARge Arkansas” webinar, “Growing Business with Digital Strategies & Relationship Building” and presented by Adam Brooks, Ph.D., will be held next Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 2:30 p.m.

In partnership with SixtyOne Celsius, this webinar covers different strategies and tactics for how you connect, build, and engage customers using purely digital platforms.

By the end of this webinar you’ll be able to:

·        Learn how to adapt to digital solutions.

·        Embrace tactics for helping potential customers find you and understanding how to convert followers into customers.

·        Identify key elements of your business’ story to begin building an online community.

·        Apply the basics of content and messaging strategy on social to build relationships no longer possible in person.

To register for next Tuesday’s 2:30 p.m. webinar, click here.

The State Chamber/AIA is holding a 2020 Washington D.C. Virtual Fly-in featuring Congressional Delegation Roundtables.

The second roundtable will feature U.S. Rep. French Hill (R-Dist. 2) at 9 a.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 11. To register, click here.

The third roundtable will feature U.S. Rep. Steve Womack (R-Dist. 3) at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 18. To register, click here.

After registering for each roundtable, you will receive a confirmation e-mail containing information about joining the meeting.

The SBA Arkansas District Office is hosting FREE one-hour daily webinars on available SBA resources for small businesses/nonprofits during COVID-19. See the calendar here.

ASBTDC offering free webinars here.

Federal News

FDA Commissioner: No matter what, only a safe, effective vaccine will get approval here.

Poll finds small business recovery losing steam amid ‘second wave’ concerns here

Virus continues to spread as schools begin to open here.

U.S. death toll could climb to 300,000 by December here.  

Winter may be worse for COVID-19 as socializing outside gets more difficult here.  

For additional information and resources, check our COVID-19 Coronavirus and Arkansas page here.